Meeting of May 13, 2010

Herb Kaufman on “A People at War: American Jewry and the Civil War”

man in a flag tie

Herb Kaufman

Our own Herb Kaufman presented us with another of his excellent programs. “A People at War: American Jewry in the Civil War.” He gave us examples of how the War split Jewish families as it did other families in America—Brother fighting brother. How Jewish families in the South supported the Southern cause as did the Jewish families in the North supported to keep the Union together. He spoke on Jewish soldiers (7) winning the Medal of Honor for their bravery in the Union Army. The bravery of Jewish soldiers in the Confederate Army. That there were some Regiments that were made up of almost entirely Jewish soldiers because of the communities were they were organized. Herb touched on Grant’s famous General Order No. 11. The eventual role of Jewish chaplains (a very few) in the Army. Jewish women doing their part for the causes in becoming nurses and spies. One of the most prominent Jewish-Americans in the Civil War period was Judah R. Benjamin, Secretary of War in the Confederate government. Another, Moses J. Ezekiel, a VMI cadet, who after the war became a world renown sculptor and designed the Confederate Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery and is buried at the base of that memorial. In Herb’s research he had found very few books written on Jewry in the Civil War. Herb never stops to amaze us with his programs on educating us on his Civil War knowledge.

May 2010 Newsletter